Any info on 4x10

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by mark, Sep 19, 2005.

  1. mark

    mark Member

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    I am looking for any info on shooting 4x10. I read the 4x10 stuff on LF.info but want to hear from actual users.

    I am looking for pros and cons of the format from users. I will be contact printing these.

    The reason I am looking to this format is I do not like the almost square look of 4x5 or 8x10, I love the pano formats, I have come to really like intimate (read smallish) contact prints, and there is no way I could afford to go to 5x12/7x17. It will happen in the future but not right now.

    Thanks for the input
     
  2. Jeremy

    Jeremy Member

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    Mark, if you already have a 4x5 camera with graflok back then you might want to look at a 6x17 back for it. This would give you a ~2.3x6.7" contact print which fits in with the small/intimate look. Also, this would give you a good, cheaper intro into panoramic photography with only having to buy one thing (the back) as opposed to an entire camera setup and film holders and film, etc. Having been tugged into the panoramic frame starting with an Ansco Pix Panorama, then a Horizon 202, and poring over Matt's 7x17" images one of the Da-Yi or Shen-Hao 6x17cm backs looks like a very good place to start. If you find you don't like it you could easily sell it here on Apug or on eBay for what you paid for it.

    edit: www.focus-dayi.com for more info from the maker of one version of this back
     
  3. scott k

    scott k Member

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    Mark,

    The present issue of VIEW CAMERA has a section on 4x10 format but I haven't had a chance to check it out yet.
     
  4. mark

    mark Member

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    I've got everything I need to modify a camera except bellows, film back and and film holders. Getting these will be not a problem as I think I can make two of the three myself for a lot less than buying them. I made and contacted 6x17cm panos with my 5x7 and they did not do it for me I wanted them just a little bigger. I am looking into them for color though.
     
  5. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    If you have an 8X10 camera, you could get into 4X10 very inexpensively if you cut an 8X10 dark slide in half length wise (excluding the handle). This cut down darkslide would only be used as a mask at time of exposure. It would then be flipped over to make the second exposure. By masking your ground glass (a simple pencil line would suffice) you could compose and get two exposures per sheet of 8X10 film.

    This way you could determine how well the 4X10 format works for you.

    I agree with your thoughts about the squarish look of 4X5 and 8X10.

    If you want to achieve the "golden mean" perspective of 12X20 or 7X11 you could even cut the dark slide to 6.125X10. That would mean wasting a little bit of film...but it would take a lot of exposures with that amount of wasted film to arrive at the cost of a 4X10 camera or 4X10 back.

    Paul Strand was reported to have done this with his 5X7 camera.
     
  6. mark

    mark Member

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    Crap. Wouldn't ya know it. I am no where near a place to buy it, and I don't subscribe, plus there are no lF photogs anywhere near me who get it either. I'll have to figure it out how to check it out. Thanks for the point.
     
  7. mark

    mark Member

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    Donald,

    You are right I could make a split darkslide which I have done with my 5x7 but found that processing was a real pain. If I had a situation where I needed to +2 on one half I invariably needed a N or +1 on the other half.

    I am not looking for the golden mean. I want to get as close to the aspect of a movie screen. It would take a lot of film to = the cost of a dedicated camera or back. SO I may just do this and not modify my beater 8x10.
     
  8. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    Mark,

    You've got a valid point on the variance in processing that one would encounter.

    I am seriously considering the split darkslide for my own use and hadn't gotten that far in my thinking. I think that what I will do in that case is to cut the film before developing (just need to fashion a stop on my rotary trimmer so that one could do it in the dark)...makes things a bit more difficult but not impossible.

    The other thing that I see is that it would require identifying each sheet of film with an "a" and 'b' designation.

    Good luck, no matter what you decide.
     
  9. colrehogan

    colrehogan Member

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    I've sent a PM to a fellow here who I know shoots 4x10 in case he doesn't see this thread.
     
  10. steve simmons

    steve simmons Inactive

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    Quote:
    Originally Posted by scott k
    Mark,

    The present issue of VIEW CAMERA has a section on 4x10 format but I haven't had a chance to check it out yet.

    Crap. Wouldn't ya know it. I am no where near a place to buy it, and I don't subscribe, plus there are no lF photogs anywhere near me who get it either. I'll have to figure it out how to check it out. Thanks for the point.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


    You could start a subscription and we will send the Sept/Oct issue

    steve simmons
     
  11. mark

    mark Member

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    Thanks for the offer steve but I do not see a lot that catches my fancy in the mag. I flip through it when I am where they sell it but have not bought one in a few years. One article is not enough to justify money that could be better spent on film and or Family, not necessarily in that order.
     
  12. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    I shoot a lot of 4x10. Personally, I love it. I bought the 4x10 back for my 8x10, I can use a 90mm Schneider Super Angulon XL and get some fantastic reaches on the negatives.

    I can enlarge them on my 8x10 enlarger with a mask I had made that gives me a 2x enlargement, which is nice at 8x20.

    I bought the film holders from Keith Canham, $95 each, pricey but worth it. I have 6 and they are fairly easy to change in a small tent, but usually last me the day. If I get really hard up for a 4x10 I just use the center of an 8x10 piece of film.

    Using a half slide on film is dangerous especially on larger film. Sliding a half slide in causes the light baffles on the film holder to split and not having anything on the lower half to protect the film can cause a light leak across the entire sheet.
     
  13. matt miller

    matt miller Subscriber

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    I've shot a little bit of 4x10 with a splitter board in an 8x10 camera. Actually it was a piece of sheet metal that I cut to fit the grooves in the camera back made for this purpose. I used 8x10 film & holders and just kept track with masking tape & pencil on each side of the holders. I wrote n+, n, n-2, etc on the tape. I then waited to use the other half for similar sbr conditions. Most times I didn't have a problem exposing both halves during an outing. I did process a few, though, with only one half exposed.
     
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  15. steve simmons

    steve simmons Inactive

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    Let's see, spend 25.00 and get a two part article on 4x10 cameras, lenses, etc. and have them as a permanent reference or don't spend 25.00 and potentially spend several hours on the interent and possibly not get as good and comprehensive info. You must like spending time on the computer and have unlimited free time.

    steve simmons
     
  16. George Losse

    George Losse Member

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    Mark,

    I've shot 4x10 in the past and am about to return to it again. It is large enough to be contact printed and also small enough to enlarge if that is of interest. When I first started shooting 4x10 I looked at the cut dark slide idea, but did not like the idea of having to remember which half had been shot. Also in wide angle images I wanted to use the center of the lens coverage rather then having to shift the lens up and down. I chose to add new film guides down the middle of older 8x10 holders. I modified three holders this way and they worked great for a number of years, I'm having to rebuild them now as they got a little worn. Working with 4x10 in the 8x10 camera was great because of being able to rotate the camera back for a verticle shot. Something that is still a problem for my 8x20.
     
  17. scootermm

    scootermm Subscriber

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    amazing level of politeness. really.
     
  18. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

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    Strand cut off an inch of the long dimension of his 5 x 7s because he thought they were not square enough. His 5 x 6 (aspect ratio of .83) format is not even close to the golden section.
     
  19. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    This is not true. The half-darkslide shouldn't be cut entirely in half, but in an "L" shape, so that the light trap functions just as it would with a normal darkslide. You can see a picture of one at www.benderphoto.com.

    To avoid the processing mismatch issue, just don't expose two halves of the same sheet in a way that requires each half to have different processing. That's what I do. You just have to be careful to keep track of which half of the sheet is exposed. I recommend Post-it notes for this purpose.

    The downside of this method is that you might not always have enough front rise/fall (or shift for verticals) to get the lens where you want it with respect to the half of the sheet you want to expose, particularly with short lenses, depending on the design of your camera and bellows.
     
  20. photomc

    photomc Member

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    Since one of the reasons I picked up the 8x10 is because I would like to do some 4x10's I have really enjoyed this thread. My original intention was to just take a darkslide and cut the viewable part in half (leaving the section for the light trap intact to avoid the light leak there). But the idea of making a 4x10 back sounds interesting (hope some of the LF camera makers are reading this...hint, hint) and then Don Millers comment about cutting a darkslide down to ... what was it 6.125 x 10 I think, that really appeals to me, since I am very fond of the 5x7 perspective. Just happen to have some older, wood film holders that need some repair work anyway, so that might be a good way to update one of them. Still use one 8x10 sheet, but might be worth it, and use some of the JandC 8x10 that is not as expensive as the Efke.

    Thanks for the thread Mark, and to everyone else for their input...proof again there is much to learn, and lost of folks here willing to share.
     
  21. John Kasaian

    John Kasaian Member

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    Get an 8x10 camera with sliders that will give you two 4x10 per sheet of film---less hassle than butchering dark slides. Look for an old Agfa/Ansco or 'dorff---some came with sliders, some didn't so ask questions.
     
  22. symmar_man

    symmar_man Member

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  23. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    It's easier to cut a darkslide than to find an old Deardorff with the sliding masks intact (particularly if you've already got a camera other than a Deardorff). You can buy one pre-cut from Bender for around $20 last I checked.
     
  24. photomc

    photomc Member

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    Thought I recalled that David, but a look at the website does not show the darkslide...there is a 4x10 panoramic adapter (which I bet is the same thing) for $34.95, but could not find a picture or description of what it is. May just send an email to find out.

     
  25. Richard Wasserman

    Richard Wasserman Member

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    I had Richard Ritter make a wood 4x10 back for my 8x10 Kodak Masterview, bought some Canham holders and now all I have to do is find time to use it. Richard did a great job on the back and I'm itching to use it. I really like that I'll be able to do verticals by rotating the back.

    Richard
     
  26. Steve_7x

    Steve_7x Member

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    As so many stated - with a variety of different tools - you can make an 8x10 work as a 4x10 - either with dark slides, new backs or simply composing with the 4x10 in moinds and crop when you print.

    I went the route of getting a dedicated 4x10 camera - a Canham. Here's the deal... the camera is dimensionally very similar to a wood 5x7... yes it's wider but it's not as tall. The weight was virtually the same. In addition Keith's holders are $95 and fiarly readily available. My kit of the camera, 4 lenses and accessories will fit in a backpack that most 4x5/5x7 users would use.

    The key limiter of these dedicated cameras is that doing verticals becomes much more challenging - as you are swinging the hole camera onto it's side. Scarry... but not as scarry as doing that with a 12x20.

    If you see your work with the 1:2.5 ratio - then it is viable.

    I shot 4x10 for the intent of enlarging - however I print many of them on Azo and mount on a 10x16 mat (half of a 16x20) - and they present very nicely even in that small size.

    I hope this helps?

    Steve